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12-18-2007, 10:00 PM   #31
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QuoteOriginally posted by dresden_phoenix Quote
but it should be able to work in "Auto" with a K10d too, right? ( even if I don't get the full p-ttl, which I have pretty much given up on, all I want is auto and manual, and it NOT FRYING my new camera)
The T series - 200, 240, 280 etc. will not work TTL with the K10d. They will, however work just fine in auto or manual.

The problem you might have with them is if you are using zooms with variable apertures - as you zoom out, the effective flash power will decrease because the lens is stopping down. I'm now to the point that I need use no variable aperture lenses on the K10d.

12-19-2007, 10:00 AM   #32
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The variable aperture thing is mainly an issue if you set your aperture at a setting the lens can't maintain throughout the zoom range. If you go F5.6 or F8 its not usually an issue. With some flashes this means you'll need to go ISO 800 to get the light you need.

I recommended the SunPak 433D as an alternative to the Vivitars because it offers swivel. Its slightly less powerful, but the controls are easier. The "chart" on the Vivitar seems cryptic at times. The Sunpak is more straightforward. It offers a good range of limited powers as well as its own auto mode. It does pretty good at bounce. Sometimes you have to run the aperture setting one stop down from what the chart suggests, but once you find the sweet spot you'll rarely have to change it. The only time its had metering issues is with my homemade diffuser spilling light directly on its sensor. (I use a large piece of diffusion velum looped over the flash)

When the Vivitars weren't so popular on Ebay you could steal them for $25 used. At $60, they aren't so hot when BH has them for $90.
As little as 2 months ago the Sunpaks were almost given away. My last MINT 433D with the MPO version was won for $3.86. Around $8 shipped! I only mention this now because I've got ALL of the small/medium flashes I care to own.. 2 285hv, 3 433D Sunpaks, and 2 Vivitar 550's for around $120 total.
If the SunPaks are still going that cheap on ebay you should snag one pronto.
12-19-2007, 02:32 PM   #33
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QuoteOriginally posted by JasonS Quote
The variable aperture thing is mainly an issue if you set your aperture at a setting the lens can't maintain throughout the zoom range. If you go F5.6 or F8 its not usually an issue. With some flashes this means you'll need to go ISO 800 to get the light you need.
That's not quite true. The aperture set changes in proportion. That's why a lens if marked f/4-5.6 and has a minimum aperture of f/22-32.

If you have a variable aperture zoom, you will have to use exposure compensation either in camera or in post processing.
12-19-2007, 03:44 PM   #34
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Ok, so here is my stupid question(s)


#1. Abandoning P-ttl, and relying only on AUTO and MANUAL, why couldnt I use another brand.. like this for example "Nikon AF TTL SB-24 Speedlight Flash"?

#2 for the same token, I have mentioned several 3rd party flash models, Vivitar, or Sigma my question is when purchasing any of them how do you know they are for Pentax? I was looking at Amazon and I saw 5 different "Sigma 530 Supers" (same exact model #, from the same vendor but each a different price ... Depending on what camera the flash was for...) Still, other vendors don't even say for which camera the unit is... Merely the model name and "dedicated flash unit" ... Then there is ebay!


Which leads to ...
#3 Do all Vivitar 285HV/ Sigma 530DG SUPERS work with pentax digitals, do they need to be specifically labeled for such, or need some sort of adaptor for the hot-shoe?

12-19-2007, 05:54 PM   #35
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Don't know about the Vivitars, but the Sigmas need to be labeled for the camera they are to be used with. The Pentax ones have a "PA-PTTL" appended to their name (eg. EF-500 DG SUPER PA-PTTL), as well as "for Pentax" on the box they come in.
12-19-2007, 09:41 PM   #36
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QuoteOriginally posted by RBellavance Quote
Don't know about the Vivitars, but the Sigmas need to be labeled for the camera they are to be used with. The Pentax ones have a "PA-PTTL" appended to their name (eg. EF-500 DG SUPER PA-PTTL), as well as "for Pentax" on the box they come in.
Relying on Auto/Manual, your problem with the auto flashes is the dedicated part of the flash. The Nikon flashes will attempt to set your Pentax to X sync with unpredictable results. The pins may appear to be in the same place, but they may have entirely different funcitons. If you have a one pin auto flash, that will work, and the multi pin flashes that accept a flash from the camera as a trigger will work as well.
12-20-2007, 09:00 AM   #37
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This forum is such an amazing resource. I wish to thank all the members for their great comments. As a new K10D owner with a bag full of older Spotmatic II gear, learning that my trusty Vivitar 2500 will work (manually of course) on the K10 is great conformation. I measured the trigger voltage on mine, and it tops out at 11.07 on brand new Rayovac Alk's. Based on the purported (from Pentax) 30vdc limit, I concluded that it should be safe.

You guys are amazing...we newcomers have so much to learn, but you make the going great!

Thanks.
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